- Cape fines contractor $1,100 a day for street-project delays; contractor blames utility relocations (5/18/17)13
- Deputies: Man, woman tried to arrange killing of his estranged wife (5/21/17)1
- Attorney general seeks bond revocation for embattled sheriff (5/17/17)3
- I will not be silenced (5/16/17)4
- Tractors owners to open restaurant in new Drury Plaza Hotel (5/15/17)
- Cape police say man assaulted, kidnapped girlfriend (5/21/17)2
- Mississippi County sheriff fights efforts in court to remove him from office (5/21/17)4
- Attorney general to review request to probe Oran timecard allegations; claims spark denials on Facebook (5/16/17)2
- Man accused of using stolen RV to break into airport (5/16/17)
- Cape man accused of shooting a woman in Jackson (5/21/17)
NOW plans march on Tenn. Capitol
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The president of the National Organization for Women declared a "state of emergency" for women's rights and planned a march on the state Capitol as news of Sandra Day O'Connor's retirement reverberated through the group's annual convention.
NOW president Kim Gandy told about 800 NOW members Friday that women need to send a message that they won't tolerate "extremist" judges who set back women's rights.
"This is our time. This is our challenge," Gandy said as the crowd replied by clapping and chanting, "Hell no, we won't go" and "We won't go back."
The group shifted the agenda for their three-day convention to include a march to the Tennessee Capitol on Saturday to "make sure Senator Frist and all senators are going to hear our voices. We're going to march on every Capitol in this country," Gandy said.
The first woman on the Supreme Court, O'Connor was often the swing vote on contentious social issues. Her retirement leaves Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg as the only woman on the court.
Gandy and former NOW president Eleanor Smeal, now president of the Feminist Majority Foundation, praised O'Connor as a moderate.
"Twenty-four years ago, as president of the National Organization for Women, I testified for Sandra Day O'Connor before the Senate Judiciary Committee," Smeal said. "I knew then that O'Connor, although a conservative voice, would be one who would not permit the elimination of women's fundamental rights, including the right to privacy."
Gandy said the group fears "a nominee along the lines of some of the extremist judges that have been put on the appellate court by George Bush."
NOW members were set to elect their president Saturday night. Gandy, elected in 2001, is being challenged by Rosemary J. Dempsey, a Connecticut lawyer who's held several national and state leadership roles since joining NOW in 1970.
Dempsey wants to focus on attracting younger members and opposing President Bush's economic agenda.
"We were effective in the 70s, and we're effective now," Dempsey said. "But there has been a backlash. Most young women don't know about NOW these days. If NOW is visible and relevant where they [young members] live, that's what makes NOW powerful."